What is legal aid?
Legal aid is money used to help support the costs required for legal advice and representation in court. This includes tribunals and family mediation. Whether you are eligible for legal aid is dependent on your individual case and financial situation.
Who can get legal aid?
Legal aid is offered to people who cannot otherwise afford to support their legal costs. You will need to prove that you cannot afford to pay the legal costs and explain your situation. An example of a serious problem would be domestic or economical abuse.
Does legal aid cover divorce costs?
Getting legal aid for divorce costs depends on where you live in the UK.
In England and Wales, legal aid does not cover divorce costs. However, you can apply for legal aid to pay towards mediation costs.
Victims of domestic abuse whilst married may be given special dispensation to help pay towards legal costs. If there has been a case of child abduction in the relationship, funding may also be offered to the threatened party.
In Northern Ireland and Scotland, you will be eligible for legal aid based on an assessment of your income, savings, assets and any investments. You should check to see what you are eligible for. You may even get legal aid depending on which benefits you receive.
What does legal aid cover?
Legal aid can cover legal help that you would get from a solicitor to:
- Negotiate with an opposing party
- Help with family mediation
- Help with legal representation in court
How do I apply for legal aid?
If you feel you’re eligible for legal aid and wish to apply for support, you can visit www.gov.uk/civil-legal-advice